‘I don’t give a damn if you believe in climate change.’
Image via Facebook
In 2011, Arnold Schwarzenegger, the former box-office champion and two-term governor of California, left office amidst a storm of controversy after it was discovered he fathered a child with an employee who worked in his home. Although the Governator’s stint in Sacramento won’t be fondly remembered by most, he did leave a positive record on protecting the environment. The Terminator star issued an executive order in 2005 that works to reduce greenhouse gases to 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050, and, the next year, he signed a bill that created the nation’s first cap on greenhouse gases.
So it came as no surprise this week when the Jingle All the Way star wrote an open letter on his Facebook page that spoke some hard truths to climate change deniers. The letter said: “I couldn’t care less if you’re concerned about temperatures rising or melting glaciers. It doesn’t matter to me which of us is right about the science. I just hope that you’ll join me in opening [the door] to a smarter, cleaner, healthier, more profitable energy future.” In his fun and well-reasoned article, The Hercules in New York star brushes the science “debate” aside and asks climate change deniers point-blank if they want to live in a healthier world and embrace new energy technologies that have been a boost to California’s economy.
Here’s the whole article:
I don’t give a **** if we agree about climate change.
ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER·MONDAY, DECEMBER 7, 2015
I see your questions. Each and every time I post on my Facebook page or tweet about my crusade for a clean energy future, I see them. There are always a few of you, asking why we should care about the temperature rising, or questioning the science of climate change. I want you to know that I hear you. Even those of you who say renewable energy is a conspiracy. Even those who say climate change is a hoax. Even those of you who use four letter words.
I've heard all of your questions, and now I have three questions for you. Let’s put climate change aside for a minute. In fact, let’s assume you're right. First - do you believe it is acceptable that 7 million people die every year from pollution? That's more than murders, suicides, and car accidents - combined. Every day, 19,000 people die from pollution from fossil fuels. Do you accept those deaths? Do you accept that children all over the world have to grow up breathing with inhalers?
Now, my second question: do you believe coal and oil will be the fuels of the future? Besides the fact that fossil fuels destroy our lungs, everyone agrees that eventually they will run out. What's your plan then? I, personally, want a plan. I don't want to be like the last horse and buggy salesman who was holding out as cars took over the roads. I don't want to be the last investor in Blockbuster as Netflix emerged. That’s exactly what is going to happen to fossil fuels. A clean energy future is a wise investment, and anyone who tells you otherwise is either wrong, or lying. Either way, I wouldn’t take their investment advice.
Renewable energy is great for the economy, and you don't have to take my word for it. California has some of the most revolutionary environmental laws in the United States, we get 40% of our power from renewables, and we are 40% more energy efficient than the rest of the country. We were an early-adopter of a clean energy future. Our economy has not suffered. In fact, our economy in California is growing faster than the U.S. economy. We lead the nation in manufacturing, agriculture, tourism, entertainment, high tech, biotech, and, of course, green tech.
I have a final question, and it will take some imagination. There are two doors. Behind Door Number One is a completely sealed room, with a regular, gasoline-fueled car. Behind Door Number Two is an identical, completely sealed room, with an electric car. Both engines are running full blast. I want you to pick a door to open, and enter the room and shut the door behind you. You have to stay in the room you choose for one hour. You cannot turn off the engine. You do not get a gas mask.
I'm guessing you chose the Door Number Two, with the electric car, right? Door number one is a fatal choice - who would ever want to breathe those fumes? This is the choice the world is making right now. To use one of the four-letter words all of you commenters love, I don't give a damn if you believe in climate change. I couldn’t care less if you're concerned about temperatures rising or melting glaciers. It doesn’t matter to me which of us is right about the science. I just hope that you'll join me in opening Door Number Two, to a smarter, cleaner, healthier, more profitable energy future.